The Chrome Messenger Bag: Stylish and Durable
Review of the Citizen and Metropolis Chrome Messenger Bags
Metropolis and Citizen are the original, and iconic messenger bags from Chrome. I have both models, and will review them here. The only difference between them is size: the Citizen is a size medium – 26 L capacity – and the Metropolis a size large – 40 L capacity. They are identical in every other way. Also worth mentioning is the Mini Metro bag. At 20.5L is the smallest messenger bag they make.
I have been using both bags for a few years now and I love them. They are stylish and comfortable, and allow you to transport your laptop and much more in style without looking like you hang out with the IT department for fun! Its comfortable padded foam strap slings over either your left or right shoulder and allows you to carry your gear around comfortably. You can choose which shoulder you would like to hold your bags on (my bags are both right). Whether walking or on a bike, the chrome bag provides a reliable, easy and stylish way to carry around your gear.
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The bag is not only stylish, but very high quality, and comes with some very handy features. While riding or walking, your contents are safe and secure inside. The two thick velcro strips that extend the length of the bag make sure that the bag will never open unintentionally. The top is additionally secured with two plastic snap closures. The bag strap is lined with a reflective fabric for safety.
The fabric the bag is made from is robust and thick 100 denier Cordura military grade material outer shell and it is lined with a layer of 18 oz. tarpaulin lining that keeps contents of the bag dry in case you get caught out in the rain. This independent inner lining is available in a variety of colors: on my Metropolis bag it is red, and on the Citizen bag, it is white. You can choose the colour of the inner lining on both models, either black, white or red.
The bag is made from a very dense and heavy weatherproof Cordura fabric that can withstand lots of abuse. Throw it around, drop it, you will be hard pressed to damage this bag. It stands up to heavy use, day after day. It is guaranteed for life, and it’s easy to see given the durability of the stitching and quality of materials.
The strap that goes around your shoulder and chest is made from the same material a seatbelt is made from: commercial grade five bar seatbelt webbing and nylon 69 thread. The closing mechanism is also a highly durable seatbelt snap closure which is great to have to quickly release the bag from your shoulder. This is a very convenient feature, especially if you are in a rush. The strap is also heavily padded with EVA-type foam for extra comfort when slung around your shoulder.
The tarpaulin inner lining in the bag is one of my favorite features. The plastic actually makes it easier to pack your bag full because the plastic allow you to slide your items in. You can really stuff this bag full with no issues – and easily secure everything inside without having to worry. One disadvantage is this bag doesn’t have a dedicated laptop compartment – so I wouldn’t put my pack in here without it’s protective sleeve.
The differences between the Citizen (medium) and Metropolis (large) and the differences are shown here:
Comparison of the two sizes
The large bag is quite a bit larger than the medium. If you are constantly carrying around lots of bulky items, consider this bag. Otherwise the medium is much more practical for everyday use.
The Metropolis bag is considerably more roomy than the Citizen. In the Citizen you can fit a 17″ laptop, accessory bag, your lunch and a couple of books. The Metropolis can accommodate everything that the medium can fit, and in the test model I also managed to place an aviation headset in it’s headset bag, a digital SLR camera and a couple more thick textbooks. It is very roomy. Your shoulder would be very sore if you were constantly filling this bag full! However, if you need to transport bulky items regularly, this bag may be for you.
Pros and Cons
To sum it up, the best features of the bag are:
- Padded, ergonomic shoulder strap
- EVA foam padded shoulder strap with cross-chest load stabilizer for increased rideability
- Heavy duty fabric construction, military-grade fabric, very robust stitching
- Seatbelt buckle closure allows you to release your bag quickly
- Weatherproof independently suspended military grade 18 oz. truck tarpaulin liner
- Tarpaulin waterproof inner lining to keeps the contents of the bag dry
- Large closing top with strong velcro closure make sure the bag never opens unintentionally
- Built for life – this bag comes with a lifetime warranty.
- Weatherproof 1000 denier Cordura outer shell
- Commercial grade five bar seatbelt webbing and nylon 69 thread
- Reflective straps for night visibility
- Stylish design!
- No dedicated laptop compartment
- The Metropolis is very big, and unless you are filling it full every day, it may be too much for daily use.
Dimensions and Specifications
Citizen : 26” wide, 15” high, 7” deep
Metropolis: 26” wide, 15” high, 7” deep
Citizen : 26 L
Metropolis: 40 L